Executive Branch

Game On: Grassley and Kavanaugh Accuser Continue to Play Chicken
Deadlines come and go as nomination is delayed

Senate Judiciary Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, has extended a deadline for Christine Blasey Ford to testify about her claim she was sexually assaulted by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh when they were teen-agers (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

When — or if — Chistine Blasey Ford will testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee about her claim that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her is very much up in the air.

But a pattern has emerged. Deadlines come. Deadlines go. In the meantime, the debate over what happened — and the fate of Kavanaugh’s nomination — continues.

Trump Slams McCaskill for Opposing ‘Truly Spectacular’ Kavanaugh
Missouri attorney general is in Senate dogfight with Democratic incumbent

President Donald Trump, here at a rally in Las Vegas on Thursday, was in Missouri the following day to boost Republican Senate candidate Josh Hawley. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump hailed Missouri Republican Senate candidate Josh Hawley as a “star” Friday night, while lambasting the Democratic incumbent, Claire McCaskill, for opposing his “truly spectacular” Supreme Court nominee. 

The president, as he often does for Republican candidates, attempted to boost Hawley, the state attorney general, by calling him onstage at the rally in Springfield, Missouri, to speak behind the presidential podium with the executive seal. 

Rosenstein Removal Charges Will Only Deepen Trump-DOJ War
But deputy AG calls Times article ‘inaccurate and factually incorrect’

President Donald Trump speaks to the media as he walks across the South Lawn while departing the White House in May. On Friday, the New York Times published a piece alleging Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein wanted to tape him and use the 25th amendment to remove him from office. (Sarah Siblinger/CQ Roll Call)

ANALYSIS | Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein denies he wanted to record Donald Trump in order to gather enough dirt to remove the president via the 25th amendment. But that’s not likely to be much solace to a president who is at war with his Justice Department.

The New York Times published a story Friday afternoon detailing alleged conversations Rosenstein had in the spring of 2017 about the circus-like operations that defined the West Wing in the early months of the Trump presidency. The deputy AG had only been in the job a few weeks, but was emotional and concerned when talking about his idea of secretly taping Trump with the goal of getting enough to trigger the 25th amendment — which provides a mechanism for the vice president and Cabinet members to begin the removal of a president from the Oval Office.

Senate E-Filing Launches New Era in Campaign Disclosures
Advocates for political money transparency praised the move away from snail-mail reports.

With the signing of a spending bill on Friday, Senators and Senate candidates are required to file campaign finance information to the Federal Election Commission electronically. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

It’s been a good week for advocates of faster, and more, political money disclosure.

With President Donald Trump’s signature Friday, it’s official: Senate candidates now must file their campaign finance reports electronically with the Federal Election Commission, making it easier for reporters, voters and opponents alike to sift through donor and spending disclosures.   

Despite New Tariffs, China Still Not Budging on Trade Tactics, White House Says
Senior official indicates Canada no closer to joining Mexico trade deal than it was when talks started

U.S. and Chinese flags on a table where military leaders from the two countries met in 2014. Four year later, the economic giants are in the midst of a bitter trade dispute. Depsite President Trump’s tariff's little progress has been made, an official said Friday. (U.S. Army Photo by Sgt. Mikki L. Sprenkle)

The Trump administration is not aiming to “cleve off” the U.S. economy from China’s, but it intends to continue pressuring the Asian giant even though tough moves like repeated rounds of tariffs have yet to bring the fundamental changes President Donald Trump is demanding.

“Our goal is not to totally divorce our economies from each other,” said a senior official who briefed reporters Friday at the White House about trade matters. “Our goal is for China to stop behaving unfairly.”

Trump Reverses Self on DOJ, FBI Documents He Says Show Bias
President says Justice Department, ‘key allies‘ asked him to reconsider

President Donald Trump departs the White House on Thursday for a campaign rally in Nevada. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump reversed himself on Friday on the release of reams of Justice Department and FBI documents he claims show an internal bias to wreck his 2016 campaign and then his presidency.

Trump earlier this week announced the text messages and other documents would soon be made public, per the request of House Republicans. But he backtracked in a Friday tweet, saying Justice Department officials and “key allies” urged him to avoid a huge document dump.

Senate Majority Leader Vows Kavanaugh Will Be Confirmed Soon
While Judiciary Committee negotiates testimony, Mitch McConnell tells conservatives it will be over soon

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., told a conservative crowd that Brett Kavanaugh will be confirmed to the Supreme Court soon. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell clearly doesn’t think the sexual assault allegations against Judge Brett Kavanaugh will be anything more than a stumbling block on his path to confirmation to the Supreme Court.

“President Trump has nominated a stunningly successful individual. You’ve watched the fight. You’ve watched the tactics, but here’s what I want to tell you: in the very near future Judge Kavanaugh will be on the United States Supreme Court,” the Kentucky Republican said.

Biden Urges Senators Not to Treat Kavanaugh Accuser Like Anita Hill
Biden was criticized as chairman of Judiciary panel after senators grilled Hill in 1991 Clarence Thomas hearings

Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. said Friday he regretted that Anita Hill was “villified” in her testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee that he chaired at the time and wished he had done more to prevent that . (Mark Wilson/Getty Images file photo)

Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. urged his former colleagues in the Senate to treat Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser better than they treated Anita Hill in 1991 as she testified about how then-Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas sexually harassed her when they worked together.

“Anita Hill was vilified,” Biden told NBC’s “Today” show on Friday. “I wish I could have done more to prevent that.”

Trump Calls on Kavanaugh Accuser to Present Police Report
If attack ‘was as bad as she says,’ Christine Blasey Ford should have filed charges, Trump says

President Donald Trump said Brett Kavanaugh accuser Christine Blasey Ford or her “loving family” should have filed charges over her sexual assault allegations in the 1980s. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 10:03 a.m. | President Donald Trump suggested Friday that if Christine Blasey Ford had been sexually assaulted by Brett Kavanaugh when they were both in high school, then charges would’ve been filed against him.

That claim runs contrary to the fact that most sexual assault victims do not report the incidents.

Rohrabacher Ridicules Kavanaugh Accusation
‘High school? Give me a break!’ California Republican says of sexual assault allegation

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., dismissed the sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh because it allegedly stemmed from high school. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher dismissed the sexual assault claim leveled against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh as a selective smear effort by the left that should have little bearing on Kavanaugh's confirmation because it allegedly occurred in high school.

"This guy who’s going to be our Supreme Court justice, and he better be our Supreme Court judge, he’s a perfect candidate, and what do they say? ‘Well, in high school you did this.’ High school? Give me a break,” the California Republican said in a recording obtained by Talking Points Memo.